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(NY) Lottery says it goofed: Mahopac winner got $31 million after taxes
THE JOURNAL NEWS
By LEN MANIACE
(Original publication: November 16, 2007)
The New York State Lottery has acknowledged that it made a $14 million mistake when it announced the amount of last week's Mega Millions award to a Putnam County man at Grand Central Terminal.
The winning ticket bought by William James Albertson from Mahopac actually brought him an after-tax prize of $30.7 million. At the big announcement, presided over by Lottery Director Gordon Medenica and Lottery announcers Yolanda Vega and Ralph Buckley, Lottery staff told reporters that Albertson would receive slightly more than $45 million once taxes were deducted. Lottery officials continued to insist that was the correct amount even after The Journal News questioned the accuracy of that figure later that day and again Tuesday morning.
"It's a simple discrepancy," Lottery spokesman John Charlson said this week.
The Lottery did tell Albertson that he would get $14 million less than the announced lump-sum figure, Charlson said. Albertson could not be contacted yesterday. Charlson said the mistake was made when someone in his office prepared a news release and the error was then picked up by others on the Lottery staff. When the figure was questioned by a reporter, Charlson said he may have simply checked the news release.
Charlson said the lottery usually touts the larger payout that could be received over 25 years rather than the immediate cash value because winners have the option of allowing New York State to invest their winnings for them. In this case, the "jackpot prize" is considered $75 million.
One local economist takes issue with this.
Farrokh Hormozi, an economics professor at Pace University in White Plains, said it was more accurate to describe the prize money in terms of what it is worth today because even a low inflation rate will dramatically reduce the value of money one or two decades in the future.
"The old saying of a bird in hand is worth two in the bush applies here," Hormozi said.
Lottery prize winners do not need New York state to invest their winnings to produce the kind of payout the state talks about, Hormozi said. The most conservative investment - U.S. Treasury Bonds -have reliably produced 4 percent annual returns, the same interest figure that the Lottery uses to produce the long-term value of its prizes.
A slightly more risky investment strategy would produce a bigger return than is possible by taking the long-term payout.
Hormozi said lotteries describe their jackpots in terms the longer term value because the talk of huge prizes drives people to buy lottery tickets.
"When the prizes rise, you see people standing in long lines for hours, people who would never go to the lottery," Hormozi said. "You have to make this so attractive and the stakes high so that they will participate."
The Red Mill Market in Mahopac Falls, where Albertson purchased the winning ticket, is festooned with posters that say the $75 million Mega Millions ticket was sold there.
Store manager Nick Capalbo said yesterday that he was surprised to hear Albertson had won $30.7 million after taxes, especially with all the signs proclaiming the higher amount. Capalbo, an education student at Pace University, said the $45 million lump-sum prize value seemed to be a more accurate way to describe the winnings.
Though the Lottery might be guilty of a little verbal manipulation, Capalbo said, $30.7 million is still a lot of money. "I'd be happy with $30 million," he said. "When you are talking about that much, it's a lot of money."
Lotto Report Note:
It's Mega smiles for Mahopac lottery winner
By LEN MANIACE, THE JOURNAL NEWS
William James Albertson held his 5-month-old baby as he checked the numbers on his Mega Millions lottery ticket with those on the computer screen Sunday morning. The first two matched. So did the second pair. Then, as Albertson sat at the computer in his Mahopac home, the unthinkable happened.
"I kept looking at it and they all matched, so that's when I got a little shaky," the 35-year-old insurance manager recalled.
The shakes were gone yesterday, when Albertson was revealed as the $75 million winner of the latest Mega Millions jackpot, the multistate lottery game, at a news conference at Grand Central Terminal. He was one of three winners with ties to the Lower Hudson Valley announced.
"I've got a lot of college to pay for," said Albertson, the father of four, when asked the inevitable question of how he planned to spend the money.
The after-tax payout Albertson is to receive shortly totals slightly more than $45 million, according to the New York Lottery. That is perhaps enough for Albertson to purchase a small, rural college campus for his children, who are from 5 months to 11 years old. It was only the second time that Albertson - known as WJ to friends - had played the lottery. An Illinois native who moved to Mahopac in 2005, Albertson first tried his luck the previous Monday. His modest gambling spree was inspired by the visit of his father, who had bought a lottery ticket in each state on his way to New York.
(The BEFORE tax payout was an estimated $45,072,150 -
the amount in the prize pool for the winner was $45,383,878.
When prompted to reveal more plans for his riches, Albertson said he would like to retire early, but made it clear his family was not planning a spending spree or any drastic changes soon.
"No plans at this point, just trying to keep things as normal as possible for the kids," Albertson said.
Even a trip to Florida that Albertson; his wife, Crista; and children will soon take has been in the works since February.
It was Crista whom Albertson woke at 7:30 a.m. to make sure he had read his ticket and computer screen correctly.
"I said, 'I hate to wake you up, but you better come look at this,'" recalled Albertson, who bought the ticket at the Red Mills Market in Mahopac Falls.
The announcement of the winners was hosted by actor and Lottery pitchman Ralph Buckley and Yolanda Vega, whose melodious voice intones the winning numbers of each night's Lottery drawing.
The other Lower Hudson Valley winners were Arif Darwin, 41, a Woodside, Queens, resident and employee at Skyline Construction in Yonkers, who won $1 million; and Samuel Carcova, 52, the Cortlandt highway superintendent, who won $250,000. Both said they planned to put their money toward their children's college education.
"We have two in college now. It's a big weight off my shoulders," Carcova said.
"It's perfect timing," added his wife, Rebecca.
The winning numbers were 02-08-44-46-51 Bonus 22.
$26 Million Claimed By Central Texas Legal Entity
Trinity RC, Ltd, by Trinity RC Management, LLC, General Partner, Raymond Carter Farrar, President, of Waco, has claimed the $26 million Lotto Texas jackpot from the drawing on September 15 at Texas Lottery headquarters in Austin. The claim was made on Sept 28, 2007 but the date of the press release was Oct. 2, 2007.
After taxes, minimum 25%, the amount would have been $12,104,838.
Valley woman cleans up in lottery (Mega Millions)
Los Angeles Times - By Stuart Silverstein
Zorina Kroop, a businesswoman who helped build up a thriving overnight janitorial service over the past 27 years, cleaned up somewhere new this week: the lottery.
The 63-year-old Sherman Oaks resident will be announced today by California Lottery officials as the winner of a $60-million Mega Millions jackpot.
Kroop found out that she was the big winner in the multi-state game late Wednesday when she dropped by the 7-Eleven store where for years she has bought lottery tickets twice a week. After scanning her ticket and learning she had won money, Kroop asked the store manager to verify her earnings. The answer came quickly: "He said, 'Sit down. You just won the Mega, $60 million.' And I said, 'You're joking!' "
"I was stunned," Kroop said. "I had to take a tranquilizer, because I was getting palpitations already, I was so excited."
When she woke up Thursday morning, Kroop said, her dog, a Chihuahua, "was sleeping next to me, and I looked at her and I said, 'Chaiya, we're millionaires!' "
Partly to settle her nerves, Kroop went grocery shopping with a cousin Thursday. And Kroop soon decided she could spend her money a little more freely than usual. "I said, 'You know what, I'm not getting the discount plastic bags.' "
Kroop plans to use some of her winnings to hire registered nurses to provide around-the-clock care for her elderly mother, who suffers from dementia and paralysis and is living in a convalescent home. She also plans to pay for her uncle and aunt to live in an assisted-living home.
In addition, Kroop said she will give money to charities that aid research into pediatric AIDS and pancreatic cancer, the disease that took her husband's life more than a quarter-century ago.
But the British-born Kroop, many of whose relatives fled the Nazis in Europe during World War II, also plans to enjoy her money, which she will take in a lump sum of slightly more than $30 million. "I'm going to party. I'm going to see my family in Israel, my family in New York, my family in London, and I'm going to the Greek isles, which has been a dream of mine," she said.
"I'm very, very grateful. This is a wonderful country. Money does grow on trees."
- Message from Dawn Nettles - The Lotto Report -
There was a Texas Mega Millions winner from the Aug 31, 2007 drawing (advertised at $330 million/ four winning tickets in all) that has NOT come forward to claim their winnings. Seems strange that all the other winners have already collected. In addition, there is a Lotto Texas Terrell winner from last April that has failed to collect too. One has to wonder, have these players failed to check their own tickets? Did they take them to have them scanned and the terminals erred in telling them that they won? Did these tickets "really" exist in the first place? Let's hope that these winners come forward.
Office pool makes big Powerball splash
The Courier-Journal, By Sara Cunningham
After a decade of pitching in a dollar a week, a Powerball office pool paid off in a huge way yesterday for 22 Kentuckians. The group of current and former employees of a Bardstown business claimed the $61.5 million Powerball jackpot yesterday afternoon after making their way to Louisville in a white SUV limousine.
When a lady at the lottery claim window asked Jane Shelver if she could help her with something, Shelver's response came quickly and enthusiastically. "You certainly can," Shelver said as she handed over the winning ticket on behalf the group being called "The Nukote 22." Nukote International produces imaging supplies like paper and laser toner, according to the company's Web site.
Each member's share will be about $894,000 after taxes, if they take the cash option, said Chip Polston, lottery spokesman. The group, which always let the computer select its numbers, is the state's first Powerball winner in four years, according to the lottery. Their winning numbers were 25, 27, 31, 44 and 54, with a Powerball of 8.
Shelver said some people in the group had already decided to take the cash option for the jackpot, which lottery officials said will end up being $28.5 million before taxes.
The lottery announced earlier in the day that the winning ticket was sold Monday at a Five Star Food Mart in Bardstown, but the winners weren't confirmed until the Nukote group arrived at the Louisville headquarters and the ticket passed through security checks.
The group includes people who work in Nukote's customer-service call center and accounts-receivable department, said Bonnie Bullock, a company supervisor and a member of the winning lottery pool. They also included several laid-off workers who chose not to move when their jobs were relocated to other cities this summer, Bullock said.
Because the Powerball pool had been paid several weeks ahead, the winning ticket included some of the former employees, said ex-employee Mike Willett, one of the winners, during a group news conference yesterday at the lottery's headquarters on Main Street.
"This was my last time pitching in, so I'm certainly happy," said Willett, who recently took a job with a different company. "This couldn't have happened to a nicer group."
Not everyone got to go to Louisville in the limousine to claim the money.
Bullock and another winner stayed behind in Bardstown yesterday to answer phones and fill in for the rest of the people who traveled to Louisville.
"I've never worked so hard in my life," Bullock said during a phone interview. "But it's worth it. We even had a third person volunteer to come in and help fill in."
Many in the group said they would use the money to pay bills and help send their children to college. But no one was talking about quitting their jobs yesterday.
Janet Adams, one of the winners, said she has two children and her husband was recently injured, so the money will help the family a lot. Kathy Graham, another winner, said she and her husband were supposed to go to lunch together to celebrate their wedding anniversary. "I came here instead, of course," Graham said, laughing. "This is quite an anniversary present."
It's too soon for some to know how they'll spend the money, Shelver said.
"Today has been a rollercoaster, and I think it will take a while for it to sink in," she said.
Shelver's morning began with an early call from one of the pool members.
Connie Mattingly, a former Nukote employee who now has a different job, said she was the first to realize the group had won.
"I was getting ready for work, and I heard on the news that the winning ticket had been sold in Nelson County," Mattingly said. "Jane (Shelver) e-mails me our numbers, so I got (online) and saw the top line. I never got any further than that."
Mattingly called Shelver, who was so excited she hung up on Mattingly, both women said.
From there, the news spread quickly, Shelver said. Soon the rest of the pool knew, then the rest of the Bardstown office, including one co-worker who had always refused to participate over the years, she said. "I think she's happy for us though," Shelver said.
The Nukote 22 were the lottery's 15th Powerball winners, and the first Kentucky winners in four years, said Arch Gleason, the president and CEO.
The last winning Powerball ticket in Kentucky was sold in July 2003 at a Hillview convenience story to Jeanie Osborne of Bullitt County. That jackpot was $13.5 million.
In 2000, a Newport, Ky., couple, Virginia Metcalf Merida and Mack Wayne Metcalf, won a $65.4 million Powerball jackpot after buying a $3 ticket at a Florence truck stop.
In April 1994, a resident of Bloomfield, Ky., Brenda Knopp, won a $64.2 million Powerball jackpot. She bought her winning ticket at Bart's Mart in Bloomfield, about 15 miles from Bardstown.
The store in Bardstown that sold the winning ticket will get a selling bonus of $44,000 but the state does not reap any extra benefits, Polston said. Funds raised by the lottery always go to support need-based and merit-based scholarships to Kentucky students, he said. During the past two years, the lottery has provided an average of $200 million a year to these scholarships, Polston said.
Lottery officials were excited that the jackpot will be shared this time around, Gleason said. "It really does spread the wealth around," he told the group during the news conference.
In Bardstown, Bullock said it was still a little hard to believe that after 10 years, the group had finally won. "It just goes to show you that it can happen," she said.
Two brothers to split $82 million lottery winnings
Amid some intense speculation in the last ten days, the two brothers one from Appomattox, the other from Buckingham County stepped forward Thursday morning to acknowledge their winnings.
On Saturday, September 1, one day after the Mega Millions drawing that produced four winning tickets for a $330 million pot, a nervous Tucker Adcock went to find his brother.
We got outside there, he said, I think we got a problem, man. Look at these numbers, Bernard said. And I looked at them numbers and went holy , and he said, What we going to do now? And I told him, I really dont know.
The brothers often buy tickets together. Tucker usually picks the numbers and gets the tickets at Ducks Corner on Route 60 in Buckingham. The winning numbers, the brothers said, had no special meaning and were sort of picked by accident.
The first set of numbers were picked by the Easy Pick, and none of them came out that week, and two weeks later he decided to play those numbers again because he was in a hurry to get home, Tucker said. And so he ran those numbers back through.
Bernard, the younger brother, is a retired prison worker. Until last week, Tucker worked for Buckingham County, monitoring one of the countys recycling centers. Carolyn Amos was his boss for four years.
Were happy because its somebody won that didnt have a lot, she said. Tuckers had to struggle for years, and now he dont have to struggle anymore. And i just think thats wonderful.
Rather than a lump sum, the Adcocks chose annual payments of $3.1 million before taxes. Tucker bought a new pickup. The brothers promise not to let the money change them.
Right now, nothings going to change, Tucker said. You know, we both were making it okay before we hit the lottery, and were going to take our time, make sure we get some good investments and good financial advice. So at the present time I cant see anything changing.
Two other winners previously claimed their shares of the $330 million total jackpot, while a fourth has yet to come forward.
Lottery confirms ticket holder's winnings
September 4, 2007 - Bunky has officially claimed his bread. Ellwood August Bartlett, the Dundalk man known as "Bunky," walked into the Baltimore headquarters of the Maryland State Lottery this afternoon to validate his winning $330 million Mega Millions ticket, which will be split among four winners.
"This is Bunky Bartlett, our new Mega Millions winner," lottery director Buddy W. Roogow announced at a news conference. Bartlett was the sole jackpot winner in the state. Three other winning tickets were purchased in New Jersey, Virginia and Texas.
Bartlett announced over the weekend that he had a winning ticket, which he says his wife, Denise, bought at Walther Liquors in Nottingham. Bartlett handed over the ticket to lottery officials, and in seconds the machine validated it. Just one problem: Bartlett left his license and Social Security card outside in his car.
"We know who he is," Roogow said, laughing. (Bartlett later produced his identification.)
Bartlett, 40, declared his intent to take a lump sum of about $48.6 million, or $32.6 million after taxes, rather than an annuity, which would pay him $3.7 million a year until 2032. Lottery officials said Bartlett would receive a check in seven to 10 days.
He said he won't live extravagantly. He'll still shop at Wal-Mart and eat at McDonald's, Bartlett said, and he has no plans to give away the money outside of family.
The Wicca devotee has also said he wants to help improve a New Age gift shop he considers his spiritual home and to focus on teaching. Wicca is a nature-based religion.
Bartlett, flanked by his son, Ryan, 21, and daughter, Ashley, 18, was calm about his huge windfall, but he acknowledged his excitement when the lottery was drawn.
"When we read off the numbers, I did scream a little and I did tear up," Bartlett said.
Retired auto worker, 2 adult children
Belawskys Claim $82M Lottery Prize
Cape May Herald
Congratulations to the Belawskys, the winners of this incredible jackpot, said William T. Jourdain, acting executive director of the New Jersey Lottery.
The Belawskys purchased their winning ticket on Aug. 30 at Blitz ' s Hole in the Wall Villas Market, 902 Bayshore Avenue, Villas.
The tickets were a natural selection. The winning numbers were: 08, 18, 22, 40 and 44, and the Gold Mega Ball number was 11.
The Belawskys are lifelong residents of New Jersey, and relocated to Cape May County in 1999.
We feel very, very lucky, said John, in a release. He bought the winning ticket. Its amazing what can happen when you stop to pick up a newspaper and a few tickets.
John is a disabled veteran with over 20 years experience in auto finance and banking; Sandras prior career was also in banking. Both have been retired for several years, and have enjoyed the quiet life in Cape May County.
When he found out that he possessed one of the winning tickets in this massive jackpot, Mr. Belawskys surprise was overwhelming: I checked the last number twice, and thought about waking Sandy up to tell her we won. I decided to let her sleep, and that was probably a good idea - neither one of has really had a good nights sleep since. It s been exciting and memorable-and its still hard to believe we won."
Mr. Belawsky explained his delay in stepping forward, " I think it took us both a while just to let the fact that we won sink in. After that, we signed the ticket and put it into a safe place and started thinking about the future. We talked with some financial professionals - with our backgrounds in banking, were pretty good with money, but when you re talking $48 million ... well it doesnt hurt to have an expert opinion or two.
Acting Executive Director Jourdain stated, John and Sandra did everything right that you could ask of a winner in a big jackpot-they signed their ticket, put it in a safe place, and then sought professional financial help. Those are the steps we love to see our winners take before they come forward.
In a lot of ways, were still in disbelief, " said John Belawsky, I know this means that our golden years can officially be golden, but past that, Sandy and I are still sorting all of this out-we have some ideas about what we want to do with this big win, but haven't made any big decisions yet.
This prize amount is one-fourth of the second-largest jackpot in the history of Mega Millions, a remarkable $330,000,000. The largest, single-ticket win in the New Jersey Lottery ' s 36-year history, however, was Harold and Helen Lerner, who were sole winners of a Mega Millions jackpot of $258 million on Sept. 16, 2005.
Two More Winners in $330M Jackpot
LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J. (AP) A disabled veteran let his wife sleep in after learning they will share a multimillion lottery prize. Then he bought himself a new pair of pants.
"It's amazing what can happen when you stop to pick up a newspaper and a few tickets," John Belawsky said Friday when he and his wife, Sandra, were introduced among the latest winners in the multistate game.
The retired Cape May County couple had one of four winning tickets from last week's $330 million Mega Millions jackpot the second largest in the game's history. Elwood "Bunky" Bartlett, who teaches Wicca in Maryland, said Sunday he, too, was a winner.
The other winning tickets were sold in Texas and Virginia.
Belawsky, 59, said his surprise at learning he had the winning ticket was overwhelming.
"I checked the last number twice, and thought about waking Sandy up to tell her we won," he said of the Aug. 31 drawing. "I decided to let her sleep, and that was probably a good idea. Neither one of us has really had a good night's sleep since."
So, what was the first thing John Belawsky did with the winnings? Buy a new pair of pants to wear to Friday's news conference.
Opting to take the one-time cash option, the Belawskys will receive about $48.6 million before paying a 25 percent federal withholding tax, lottery officials said.
John Belawsky bought the ticket at Blitz's Villas Market in the town of Villas.
Lottery officials said John is a disabled veteran with over 20 years experience in auto finance and banking. His 49-year-old wife also worked in banking.
It's the second time a winning Mega Millions ticket was purchased in Cape May County. A winning ticket for Mega Millions' biggest jackpot ever $390 million in March was sold at Campark Liquors in Woodbine.
Las Colinas Lottery Group Trust Claims $7 Million
(Comments in italics by Dawn Nettles - The Lotto Report)
The Cash Value Option prize totaled $7,067,548.80, before taxes.
After minimum taxes, the group (25 players) should have divided $5,300,661.60 - meaning each player would receive $212,026. However, because the TLC refuses to accept IRS Form 5754, these poor people were out the expense of attorney's to prepare the paper work (trusts) for tax and gift tax reasons.
From the states point of view, it lost the opportunity to collect any back child support, taxes and student loans if any had been owed.
Last year, only 3 states refused to accept IRS 5754 - Wisconsin, Georgia and Texas - although the Georgia Legislature had proposed legislation to force the GA Lottery to accept this form from pool winners. The outcome of the proposed legislation is unknown at this time.
Weve been playing for 18 months, and we wouldnt have been playing if we didnt think we could win, said Damon Sawyer, group member. Weve won small prizes before, but thats all.
- Special Message From Dawn Nettles -
Limited partnership keeps lid on big Lotto win
LEAGUE CITY A business partnership claimed the $75 million Lotto Texas jackpot won earlier this month. Panjo Investments Ltd. claimed the April 7 jackpot, Texas Lottery Commission spokeswoman Leticia Vasquez said Thursday. The winning ticket was a quick pick, meaning a computer chose the numbers. The winner chose the cash-value option amount of $45,014,921. The $75 million jackpot was the largest for the Texas Lottery in the past 2 1/2 years.
Second Mega Millions Winner Comes Forward
The New Jersey Lottery identified them only as being from Cape May County, at the state's southern tip.
"We feel very fortunate and blessed," Harold Messner said in a statement issued by the Lottery. "This is that early retirement we've always dreamed of. Now we can do all those things we said we would do once we retired."
A truck driver in Georgia had the other winning ticket and claimed it within hours of the drawing.
Messner said he and his wife didn't sleep for the rest of the night after they realized the ticket he had purchased at a liquor store in Woodbine had all the winning numbers.
The couple said they wanted to talk to a financial adviser before coming forward.
Milwaukie Man Claims $182.7 Million Powerball jackpot
Mega Millions Winner Has Date With Fishing Pole
Amarillo Partnership Claims Whopping $122 Million Prize
The numbers drawn were 7-11-26-38-54 Bonus 13.
Maintenance worker wins $163 million jackpot
By CARLOS CAMPOS
On Monday, the maintenance man was in downtown Atlanta picking up $66 million, courtesy of the Georgia Lottery.
"I'm retired," Chason told reporters when asked if he planned to keep working for the city housing authority in South Georgia.
By purchasing the winning $1 ticket on Thursday at a Stop N Buy in Bainbridge, Chason, 52, became the largest single winner in Georgia Lottery history.
He won the annuitized $163 million Mega Millions jackpot, a multi-state lottery. Chason chose the cash option payment of $95.4 million. After a roughly 31 percent cut of federal and state taxes, he will get about $66 million, said Georgia Lottery Corporation President and CEO Margaret DeFrancisco.
Chason, appearing at lottery headquarters dressed in blue jeans, a white button-down shirt and tan cowboy boots, seemed relaxed, but also overwhelmed by his sudden riches and the subsequent publicity.
"Oh boy," Chason exhaled as DeFrancisco handed over an oversized prop check for $95.4 million in front of a bank of television news cameras.
Chason stopped for gas Sunday morning and checked his ticket against the winning numbers. He had bought a Quik Pik ticket, which chooses the number combination at random. He usually buys two tickets a week, he said.
"I just froze," Chason recalled when he realized the numbers matched. He told the store clerk, "I believe I won the lottery. And he stuck it in the machine and said, 'Yeah, you did!' I've been in a daze ever since."
Chason said he didn't have any immediate plans for the money. He knows he wants to buy some land, and build a home on it. He said he also wants to take care of his family and his longtime companion Diane Reynolds. Chason said he also might help his nephew a minister build a church.
"I believe I'll still be the same," Chason said. He later added, "I really haven't thought about it. It hasn't sunk in. When I make that first withdrawal, then it'll sink in."
The couple drove to Atlanta from Bainbridge on Sunday in Reynold's Kia Optima; Chason drives a 1983 Ford F-250 pickup truck.
"He's a big deer hunter, so I thought he had just killed a big buck," Reynolds said about the excited call she got from Chason on Sunday morning.
"It was a big buck," Chason deadpanned in a Southern drawl.
Until Chason, the largest single winner in Georgia Lottery history was Stephen Moore of Fitzgerald. Moore won $150 million in a Mega Millions jackpot in 2003. Of the 54 Mega Million jackpot winners, seven have come from Georgia. Twelve states participate in the Mega Millions drawing.
Message from Dawn Nettles - The Lotto Report - Mr. Chason didn't really collect his money today. It takes the lottery a minimum of 5 days to fund. I've heard from some winners who had to wait 2 weeks to 30 days before the lottery funded their winnings.
Big winner in Mega Millions lottery is keeping low profile
New Brunswick man hits a $26M jackpot
BY SOFIA KOSMETATOS AND TOM HAYDON
A New Brunswick man last night claimed the $47 million Mega Million jackpot win June 2, 2006 -- but he's playing it cool.
Very little information was revealed yesterday about Raynald Holder by the New Jersey Lottery Commission that quietly e-mailed the announcement late in the business day.
Holder's lawyer said that was all by design.
"He's trying to keep low profile," said Brian Selvin. "He doesn't wish to have any publicity, because he does not want to deal with people he does not know who might call."
Holder did release a brief statement with the commission's announcement calling himself "very fortunate and blessed." He said he plans to use the money to help his extended family.
"I'm very happy that I will be able to help my nephews with their college plans, and take care of a number of things," he said. "I've always wanted to take care of my family."
Holder contacted the lottery commission Monday to claim his prize. With the cash option, he will receive $26,689,373 before the 25 percent federal withholding tax, for the ticket purchased at a Krauszer's Food Store on Bayard Street.
According to the lottery statement, Holder selected the numbers himself -- family birthdays -- as opposed to letting the machine pick them automatically. They were 3, 10, 18, 36, 38, with the Mega Ball number 41.
Selvin said his client is an unmarried blue-collar worker who played the lottery regularly, but "not in large amounts."
At Krauszer's a large yellow sign announced last night it is the place of a Mega Millions win. Owner Atul Tijoriwala had nothing but praise for Holder, who he said played Mega Millions three to four times a week.
"This guy is very, very good," he said. "He made my store proud. He made me proud."
Holder's win is the 14th largest single-ticket win in the New Jersey Lottery's 35-year history, according to the lottery commission.
Harold and Helen Lerner of Rutherford, in Bergen County, won the state's largest prize ever in September, when they took $258 million in the multi-state Mega Millions.
Lubbock Group Collects $20.9 Million (Gross)
June 9, 2006 - A prophetic dream, complete with numbers, led the members of the LGroup Managed Trust of Lubbock all the way to Austin to claim a Cash Value Option Lotto Texas jackpot prize in the amount of $15,693,986 after MINIMUM taxes were deducted. The jackpot was advertised at $36 million.
I recognized the numbers right away and woke up my husband to tell him, I think were millionaires, Skidmore said. He asked me how I knew and I told him I saw my numbers. Then I got on the phone.
I answered the phone by asking, Did we win? said LGroup Managed Trust member Sharla Pierce. The Lubbock phone lines were really burning up that night, as group members continued to call each other.
Estella Barron, another group member, got on the phone and wasnt sure what Skidmore was telling her about winning. Her question was, Won what? The only member of the group who got any sleep that night was Brenda Mitchell because nobody had her phone number.
I didnt know until Monday when I checked the numbers on my computer, Mitchell said. I started screaming.
Almost every member of the group already has some idea of what she will do with her share of the prize money.
Gina Schultz said shes going to indulge herself in an extravagance shes always wanted. Im going to let a personal shopper do some clothes shopping for me in Dallas, she said. The rest Im going to save and invest.
Cindy Skidmore is going to Hawaii. This trip is really for my brother, who died last December, she said. Im going to spread his ashes in Maui.
Sharla Pierce no longer has to work two jobs. Now shes got time to concentrate on the one thing she wants to purchase for her family. Im buying a new house, she said. This will give our family lots more room than we have now. I also plan to save for my kids college educations.
Estella Barron plans to buy something for her husband. Hes getting a new pick-up truck, she said. Im also going to spend a lot more time with my eight-pack, my grandchildren. Thats the best for me.
Brenda Mitchell, who is considered the lucky charm of the group by the other members because she won a Mini-Cooper convertible car from the inside of the cap of a 20-ounce soda bottle, is already planning a trip. Im going to Las Vegas, Mitchell said. I love Vegas!
A sixth woman who also shares in the win, chose not to attend the formal prize presentation and news conference.
The winning ticket was purchased at the 7-Eleven #423, located at 3402 98th Street in Lubbock. For selling the winning ticket, the store is eligible to receive a bonus of one percent of the jackpot. That amount is approximately $362,000.
Another woman who claims she was part of the jackpot pool is still awaiting word on her lawsuit filed on May 19 in Travis County. The lawsuit has been postponed, according to media reports.
Betty Domingo claims in her lawsuit that she is due $2.9 million but was excluded from the winnings.
A restraining order issued by a judge on May 19 preventing the Texas Lottery Commission from distributing the jackpot expired on June 2, according to court documents. Domingo's Austin attorney, Arthur Walker Jr., declined to comment on the case.
Houston Trust Claims Last Lotto Texas Jackpot Under Old Playstyle
The Quick Pick ticket was the last ticket to match all numbers from the previous Lotto Texas play style in which players chose five numbers and a Bonus Ball. The ticket was purchased with the Cash Value Option, which paid $39 million, before taxes - $29,445,320 after MINIMUM taxes.
The ticket purchased for the February jackpot was bought at the Shop & Save, located at 2626 Yale Street in Houston. The retail owner has received a bonus of $500,000 for selling the jackpot-winning ticket.
A representative of AB Revocable Living Trust has requested minimal publicity.
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To Obtain Information on Texas Winners
Many winners set up trusts, partnerships and corporations
when they win the lotto. If you want more information
on the enity that claimed the jackpot, all you have to do
is make an open records request through the Comptrollers
office or the Secretary of State.
Secretary of State:
From the Secretary of State, request "copies of the
articles that have been filed" or a copy
of the "Corporate Detail Screen."
Phone: 512-463-5578; Fax: 512-463-5643
For General Questions Call
Corporate Info - 512-463-5555 - 512-463-5586
Click the link on the left sidebar that says,
"Corporations and Other Business Organizations"
This is also where you can read the Texas Register.This is
the publication that TX state agencies use to post rule changes and
just all kinds of legal postings. Just click on "Texas Register" to
Comptroller of Public Accounts
From the Comptroller's office, request a copy of the
"PIR on file for (name of trust, llc, l.p. etc)"
P. O. Box 13528
Austin, Texas 78711
Office: 1-800-252-1381 Fax: 512-463-4288
The Lotto Report
P. O. Box 495033
Garland, Texas 75049-5033
(972) 681-1048 (Fax)